SEO And Social Media Can Work Together In Harmony
In the digital marketing sector there is a hot debate between the merits of search and social marketing as the dominant tool for online success. Social is the new kid in town, fresh and exciting, while SEO has had a rough time in the last few years, thanks to a string of Google algorithm updates.
Some marketers and website owners seem to interpret this as a choice they need to make, between SEO and social media, as if the two can’t stand to work in the same marketing strategy. This couldn’t be further form the truth, however, and if anyone turns round and tells you that either SEO or social media doesn’t work, they’re simply not doing it right.
SEO Is A changing game
Most of the fuel for the SEO vs social fire comes from the fact that SEO isn’t what it was and social media is a lot harder than it looks. Social advocates will tell you SEO is dead, while dedicated search marketers will say social media is too ambiguous and time consuming.
SEO is alive, kicking and stronger than ever – it’s just that that you have to play by the rules now that Google takes a zero tolerance attitude to spam.
Basically, SEO is simply more difficult than before because the cheap tricks no longer work and you have to do things properly.
Meanwhile, social media has been changing just as rapidly in its shorter life. Social isn’t the free advertising tool many business owners were lead to believe and it takes a lot of time, effort and strategy to make a social campaign effective. No more so when your target audience embraces new social networks and starts sharing content in a different kind of way.
Making the two work together
The fact is both marketing tools have their strengths and both have their weaknesses – just like any other resource we have available. But you can make the two work together and, if you have the resources, that is exactly what you should be doing.
The competition for keywords is incredibly intense these days, but Google is getting smarter at how it reads people‘s search queries – which means long-tail keywords and variations give you a chance to cut through the competition. They really work too, as long-tail keywords are shown to gain a higher click-through rate from users.
Moving on to social and the big lesson from the last few years is to choose your networks carefully and focus on micro content, rather than obsessing over the nest viral post or video. Time is the key factor when it comes to social media and bigger businesses have entire teams that can dedicate their whole day to it. If this isn’t the case for you then you need to choose your networks wisely and publish a constant stream of smaller content snippets, images and videos. Forget about viral and just focus on engaging with valuable content that actually has something to offer.
A question of focus
Unless you have a large marketing team behind you, the only way to yield success from both SEO and social is to focus your efforts on the areas that get results. Long-tail keywords target a more specific audience that is likely to buy into your services, while it boasts a better click-through rate – so focus on that.
While you can cut your social media workload with some careful planning and a constant stream of shorter and visual content. Not only is this easier for your audience to consume, it’s also quicker for you to produce – which frees up more time to combine your social efforts with a solid SEO campaign.
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